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Fact Check: Not earthquake, this video shows an accident in Istanbul hours before the tremors

AFWA found that the viral video shows an accident that occurred in the Mecidiyeköy area of Istanbul’s Sisli district hours before the earthquake — and thus, unrelated to its AFWA Probe.

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Fact check
Many who shared the video claimed it showed the devastation caused by the recent earthquake.

By Jyoti Dwivedi: An earthquake of magnitude 5.9 shook northwest Turkey on November 23. Reportedly, at least 50 people were injured and buildings in the Duzce province. The epicentre of the earthquake was in Golyaka, a district in Duzce, about 200 km east of Istanbul.

Following this, a video of several cars, stranded in the middle of a road in a haphazard manner, has gone viral on social media. Some of these cars appeared damaged and smoke could also be seen coming out of some of them. Vehicles that looked like ambulances could also be seen.

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Many who shared the video claimed it showed the devastation caused by the recent earthquake. One such tweet read, "A magnitude 6.0 Earthquake has struck an area of western Turkey near the town of #Duzce, about 210km (130 miles) east of #Turkey largest city #Istanbul." The archived version of this tweet can be seen here.

AFWA found that the viral video shows an accident that occurred in the Mecidiyekoy area of Istanbul’s Sisli district hours before the earthquake — and thus, unrelated to its AFWA Probe.

AFWA Probe

In one of the viral tweets, we noticed that a person had pointed out that the viral video shows an accident that happened in Istanbul and not the earthquake.

Subsequently, we conducted a reverse search of the video’s keyframes alongside relevant Turkish keywords. We found that the video was posted by the Turkish newspaper Sabah on its verified Facebook page on November 23. As per its description, the clip shows a traffic accident that occurred on the E-5 highway. Twelve vehicles had reportedly collided with each other in an accident that injured at least eight people.

Other Turkish-language media websites like TRT Haber, Yeni Akit and Haber Global also reported on this. As per these reports, this accident occurred in the Mecidiyekoy area of Istanbul’s Sisli district.

According to the Turkish news portal B Gazete, a car that was speeding on the E-5 highway of Istanbul crashed into a commercial taxi and caused the accident.

Time difference

It is noteworthy that while both, the accident and the earthquake, occurred in Turkey on the same date, they occurred at different times. According to Reuters, the earthquake hit Turkey at 04:08 am local time. An official Twitter account of the Turkish Police also mentioned the same time in a tweet.

News outlets that reported the Mecidiyekoy accident mentioned that it occurred at 01:20 at night. That it did not occur during the day is also clear from the video.

Istanbul accident

Thus, it is clear that while the viral video is from Turkey and from the day of the earthquake, it preceded the natural disaster by at least a few hours.

INDIA TODAY FACT CHECK

Fact Check Says:
Half true

Claim:

This video of stranded cars shows the damage caused by an earthquake that occurred in Turkey in the early hours of November 23.

Conclusion

This video from Istanbul shows an accident that occurred a few hours before the earthquake.

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